Skip to Content

The World’s Most Powerful Women: November 28

Had Hillary Clinton become the United States’ first female president, she likely would have inspired other women to run for office. Clinton, of course, lost this month’s election, but her defeat is still pushing women into politics.

The Washington Post reports that Clinton’s loss and Donald Trump’s victory have spurred some women—disappointed with the outcome—to take action beyond marching in protests and signing petitions.

A 22-year-old college student named Mia Hernández told the Post that she plans to make a bid for a San Jose City Council seat or a spot on the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors in 2020. “Everybody says organize, don’t mourn, make a change,” she said. “So I said to myself, ‘How am I going to be an active member in this? You know what, I need to run for office. I need to be a part of that decision-making. I need to make sure Trump’s voice is not the only voice out there.’”

Running for office could serve as an outlet for some frustrated female voters, but it could also boost women’s overall representation in government down the line. Women’s odds of winning office are nearly the same as men’s; the challenge is getting them to run in the first place.

The result of the 2016 presidential election could produce some problems for women, but inspiring more of them to run for office is at least one potential—perhaps unexpected—upside.



Mind the gapDespite London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s self-described feminism, city departments are harboring substantial gender pay gaps. At Transport for London, it’s 19.2%, at the Metropolitan Police, it’s 11.6%, and at the London Legacy Development Corporation, it’s a staggering 35%. Khan expressed outrage at the figures and now will require each organization to publish action plans for addressing the divides.Evening Standard


Retrograde results
In Kuwait’s elections this weekend, 15 women ran for the 50 seats up for grabs in parliament, but only one won: Safaa al-Hashem, a liberal who’s served in previous parliaments.
Associated Press

Tone deaf TV
Women in Morocco were horrified last week when a state broadcaster ran a segment on how women can use makeup to mask evidence of domestic violence. A daily program showed a makeup artist dabbing coverup on a model’s swollen and bruised face. Hundreds of women signed a petition for an apology that circulated after the airing. The station eventually removed the clip from its website and said the segment was “completely inappropriate.”


Trump taps K.T.
Trump selected another woman for a top position in his administration this weekend when he tapped Kathleen Troia “K.T.” McFarland as his deputy national security adviser. McFarland, who worked in the Defense Department in the Reagan administration, has the same hardline approach as Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, Trump’s pick for national security adviser. She’s frequently criticized the Obama administration for being too weak in fighting terrorism.

The geeky girl
In a profile of actress Olivia Munn, who stars in the new movie Office Christmas Party, the New York Times highlights her tendency to play characters with a geeky streak. “I love finding roles where the woman is smart, and being a love interest does not define who she is,” she says. “And I think the only way to change a stereotype in media is to write roles where women are the tech experts and the doctors and the scientists.”
New York Times



Protesting Park
President Park Geun-hye faced what’s believed to be the biggest protest ever staged against a South Korean president this weekend as citizens continued to call for her resignation. The ballooning influence-peddling scandal is especially concerning to the U.S., which relies on the now-hobbled nation as an ally in its conflict over North Korea’s nuclear arsenal.
New York Times

A solo show
Denise Ho was once one of the biggest names in Asian music, but when she joined the pro-democracy Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong in 2014, she was banned from touring in China and dropped by corporate sponsors. Now, as an independent artist, she performs on the streets and has become an icon of resistance to Beijing.

Not ‘part of the job’
Sydney Morning Herald investigation into sexual harassment in service-based industries and just how common it is features anecdotes from 13 women. Says one: “From overt harassment and physical assault through to the general lack of respect, the assumption that you don’t know as much as men—it’s everywhere, all the time.” 
Sydney Morning Herald



In “Jackie,” Natalie Portman explores JFK mythmaking
Wall Street Journal

Author Elizabeth Gilbert never imagined being a childless adult

Director Selma Vilhunen is the phenom behind Finland’s big-screen rise

A podcast of their own for women in music

Hillary Clinton’s campaign will participate in Wisconsin election recount


“Although the death of a human being is rarely cause for celebration, it is the symbolic death of the destructive ideologies that he espoused that, I believe, is filling the Cuban exile community with renewed hope and a relief that has been long in coming.”
--Singer Gloria Estefan, who was born in Havana and escaped to America, on Fidel Castro's death.